Dominic Thiem showed his mettle by rallying from a set down to beat John Isner in the Madrid Masters quarterfinals.
The Austrian is playing his first tournament for a few weeks after admitting to suffering some burnout at the start of this year.
He was made to work for his spot in the semis, though, with Isner's renowned huge serve thriving in the high altitude in Madrid.
The American started quickly, breaking Thiem in his first service game before closing out the first set.
Thiem, though, regrouped and showed he is fresh and ready to compete again by digging out a fine 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 win.
“I mean I think we all know that he’s one of the best servers in history,” Thiem said on court after the match, "and this altitude here in Madrid makes it even tougher to return his serve.
“But, I was a little bit surprised by his return game. I think that he actually attacked almost both of my serves the first and the second and it took me a while to get used to it.
“And, I mean, if you start with a break down against guys like Isner it’s like starting from a set down, and I think the momentum and the whole match changed when I saved those three break points in the second set.”
For more exclusive content from Tennisbuzz, including news, features, trivia, promotions and more, please be sure to sign up for our newsletter below or via our home page.
Why not test your tennis knowledge by tackling one of our fiendish quizzes too?